"Lefty...Is...REBORN!!! Screamed the Doctor, clutching his chest... "It's alive!!"
I kid you not, this actually happened.
Mum and I just starred at each other. Did that really just happen? Did he really just scream out "Lefty is reborn!" or is the morphine taking me to a whole new level of crazy?!
Yes he said it. Or rather, he screamed it. We both heard it. Loud and clear.
I really did think my morphine drip was on far too high. But luckily Mum helped steer me through the drugged up fog by explaining that the Doctor apparently had two hearts and one of them, Lefty, had stopped beating but was now perfectly fine.
Ah right then, of course, that makes perfect sense.
There we were, in hospital, me just coming out of my post operation haze and mum sat next to my bed tuned in to the penultimate episode of Doctor Who. It was a very fuzzy time for me, but that line definitely got my attention. It also got the attention of my sister, who nearly 200 miles away had exactly the same reaction as me - "Did he really just say that? Did he really scream out 'Lefty is reborn' - on the same night your Lefty got the new implant??" Yes Lu he did. And it was brilliant, just brilliant.
Because the very gorgeous Matt Smith was right, Lefty was indeed reborn. Gone was the old stiff Frankenboob, with its wonky edges and hard bits, gone was the annoying pipe that stuck in to my ribs, gone are the days of pumping up the jam. All gone. Frakenboob is now more. Lefty has risen from the operating table like a boob shaped phoenix and has been reborn as a real life (or very close to it) boobie! And he feels amazing.
The morning I went in to hospital I was absolutely terrified. My only reference point was the last time I'd been there. The mastectomy. And that was a world of pain I couldn't even have imagined. After that surgery I couldn't move. I couldn't even cry, my whole body felt brutally attacked. I hurt in every way possible. So this time, going back in, I was terrified it was going to be the same.
Waking up in recovery is never fun, ever. But after the first few hours, when the fuzzy head and sick feeling started to pass I realized I could move my arms without pain. In fact I could move my head, I could sit up, I even got out of bed pretty easily (with a little assistance). This was nothing like the last op. Not even close to it.
The difference was staggering. It was amazing in fact. I was so happy. I cried. I cried my eyes out, because I could. It was such a huge relief. It wasn't like last time, not one little bit. It felt so good to let it all out. I was overwhelmed with it all. I couldn't believe that I was ok, that the pain wasn't as bad and that Lefty was right there, all big and boob like. Right in front of me. The last time I woke up there was nothing, it had been taken away. But this time, Lefty was back and bigger than ever! I can't really do justice to the feeling that came over me, relief, pure relief is as close as it gets.
I only stayed in a night, which was fine by me, the hospital is lovely and everyone there is amazing but there's nothing like being in your own bed. But after about two days of being in the flat I could tell mum was getting restless. I was very happy in my PJ's moving from the bed to the sofa, from the sofa back to bed, sleeping off the hangover of the anesthetic. But mum, well mum isn't really a 'do nothing' kind of person. No. Mum likes to be busy, she likes to be doing stuff, she likes to have a project. Me resting, well, that's quite a boring project.
So two days after we got home mum set about getting stuff sorted, and by stuff I mean anything and everything. My internet needed to be connected, check and online. I was thinking of getting a juicer to be a bit healthier, ordered and delivered. I wanted have some new healthier recipes, new cookbook bought, lentils cooked. The list continued. Every day that mum had a project she was happy. By day four my bedroom even had a new lick of paint and now has a very nice new feature wall. Mums, they really are incredible - I'm pretty sure I've got one of the best. Scrap that, I've got the best.
But by the end of the week I was running out of projects and we'd started to annoy each other, a sure sign I was on the mend.
And I am on the mend. (Even though that's probably the phrase I hate most of all. Please never say to anyone going through any kind of Cancer 'good to see you're on the mend'. It's not fucking flu, it's cancer, there is no on the mend. It's not something that's just over and done with like a cold. It's not a broken arm that will 'mend' its cancer you idiot. So please, just please, never, EVER say that to anyone. And if you have cancer and someone says it to you, you have every right to tell them to knob off and punch them on the nose - oh and then say 'It's ok, you'll be on the mend soon enough!' I'll say it again, idiots.)
Anyway....yes the dressings have now come off and Lefty and Righty are looking pretty bloody good. Oh yes, I said Righty because he got some action too. For all of his "oh look at me, I have a nipple" showing off, Righty was in fact in need of a little attention. There was no way he was going to be able to stand up to a new super, perfectly formed, perky Lefty. Noooo. In the cold light of day it would be Righty that looked a little....shall we say relaxed....(read droopy)....next to the new and improved Lefty. Oh how the mighty have fallen, not so smug now are you nipple boy!
So Righty got a little lift at the same time. Which is a very good thing. Having matching boobs is actually pretty important. You don't want one boob looking like the granny version of the other boob, no, they need to be identical twins. Preferably perky, bouncy, jiggly twins - who like mud fights and jelly!
Those twins are still a little way off, Lefty needs some 'decoration' and that won't happen for another month. So for now it's about getting to know this new Lefty. Honestly, it's a little strange. I mean obviously it's great, but strange non the less. Because, well, it's not me. I mean it feels like me, it looks like me, but it's not really me. It's just the closest I will ever get to the old me. And that's what I have to get used to, that's what I need to accept. I guess it's going to take some time. And it's not quite there yet so I need to be patient a little longer and wait and see what it's like when I'm finally finished, when Lefty is totally "reborn", decorations and all. Maybe then it'll feel more like me. And maybe this whole crazy, nightmare will be over.
I have a lingering feeling though, that like all truly horrific nightmares this one will stay with me for some time to come.
I think I need to accept that having Cancer, or being someone who had Cancer, has fundamentally changed me. Mentally, emotionally and physically, it's changed everything. So it really doesn't matter if Lefty (and Righty) live out their lives as the worlds best boobs (aim high right?) the fact is I did have cancer. My whole life got turned upside down the moment someone said those words to me. I had to change in ways I never wanted to.
And that will stay with me, long after the scars have faded.
But for now I've got some decorating to look forward to and I guess at some point I need to start thinking about getting my old single girl life back on the road - crikey, now how the hell do you tell a boy about all that??
How's this for an opener -
'Do you prefer girls with real boobs or fake ones?
'Ok so how would you feel about a girl who has the best of both worlds?'